The Trolling Hour: Everyone Trolls

When in Rome, do as the Romans do. – St. Ambrose

On the Internet, does everyone eventually wind up trolling?  This seems to be precisely what has happened in a recent fracas involving anime blog critics Colony Drop and review-cum-streaming site Anime News Network.  Editor Zac Bertschy took aim at the Gundam-named site:

Can’t wait for the next article about an 80’s OVA everyone’s fucking sick of hearing about from bloggers exactly like you!

Either way the fact that you’re jerking yourself off to slamming Casey Brienza is sad.

Colony Drop wasted no time firing back:

Does it make you feel good to defend shit content? You have an opportunity to do something respectable w/ ANN, but you’re wasting it

Asked by ANN to elaborate on “respectable,” CD clarified,

Reviews that don’t suck. Using your site’s prominence to actually improve the quality of journalism in this industry.

ANN was unsatisfied:

Second one I’ll take, first one is lazy bullshit. “reviews that don’t suck!!” is code for “reviews I didn’t write”.

In fact that’s your response every time.”Legitimate criticism!!” even though you sound like a giant trolling douche every time.

Colony Drop claimed victory through relevance:

Today’s experiment in creating stupid drama was a resounding success. Thanks to everyone for being part of this.

Furthering the argument that this was a bid for attention, they even threw in a shoutout to ensure coverage:

Where oh where is @moritheil to blog about all this drama!

This is far from the first exchange between ANN and the self-appointed critics, who claim their site underlines all that is gone wrong with anime blogging.  ANN previously admitted that some Colony Drop writers would be considered professionally employable if not for their tendency to deliberately offend.

@colonydrop I’d hire you as a writer if I didn’t think you were going to be cranky, mean and combative toward me and my staff.

CD, for their part, have consistently maintained that almost the entire anime blogosphere consists of detritus, and have not been shy about letting people know. ANN is, of course, far from the only site CD has targeted.  Their twitter history and blogging are a fusillade of insults:

@ANNZac Instead of worrying about this fansub crap, how about worrying about getting some competent reviewers?

@BradleyCMeek What this “community” needs is more brutal honesty, less of your hall monitoring TBQH.

@animealmanac That review is astonishingly bad and at times outright wrong. You should grow a pair and allow comments on your posts, too.

LOLing at the Otaku Elimination debacle. Guys, if you have an anime blog just assume that it sucks. Easier that way.

Of course, while it would be easy to dismiss Colony Drop, their non-trolling posts display insight.   The fact that their criticisms can be at times articulate and dead-on makes them all the less palatable to their targets. And while it would be equally easy to dismiss ANN’s attack on them as mere bitterness over being targeted (as Colony Drop has suggested), it is true that Colony Drop is virtually universal in its condemnation, making it useless as a guide for determining the best of the blogosphere.

Though CD and ANN were the primary actors in this clash of wills, they were far from the only ones: Anime3000 got involved, with Zac accusing them of sensationalism:

@Anime3000 No offense but a lot of what you’ve been publishing recently seems like copycat attention-grabs rather than legit content.

@anime3000 Really? Because it seems like a transparent “me too” thing to pull right after it became clear how popular the OEG thing became.

They put up a subsequent article on the Twitter drama, an unprecedented meta move for a first-hand review site.

The truth, ultimately, may be the one thing that CD and ANN can agree on: internet drama is silly.

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Published in: on November 23, 2009 at 3:55 PM  Comments (12)  
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12 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. At the end of the day though, Colony Drop is a shitty Internet dumpster and ANN is a major influence center. Also, Twitter dorama is bit cheap.

  2. It’s not like ANN is a respected site.

  3. “Colony Drop is virtually universal in its condemnation, making it useless as a guide for determining the best of the blogosphere”

    Sounds like Nabokov. Read him and enjoy him, but don’t even try to get recommendations from him.

  4. Except that Colony Drop isn’t enjoyable and never was.

  5. A fool take no pleasure in trying to understand; he only wants to express his own opinion.

  6. And that’s why I don’t read anything from ANN, CD or OEG. Waste of time IMO.

  7. Professionalism vs. Trolls will not matter when the Singularity comes. When that happens, do you really think the machines will stand to be used to troll people with?

    Anyway, this is indeed a matter of dorama that isn’t really worth anything, I mean Neil Gaiman’s dealing with bigger dorama with NPR blog right now – when big time bloggers have dorama, that my friends is when to get the popcorn.

  8. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mori, Anime 3000. Anime 3000 said: RT @moritheil: Everyone Trolls: the @ANNZac – @ColonyDrop slapfight with guest appearance by @Anime3000. http://bit.ly/8x96Gw #TMR […]

  9. In retrospect, it was very silly to try arguing with a website that writes about “Japtoons” and old “Oriental Video Animations.”

  10. ANN is a big waste of time guys.

  11. Hmm. I like ANN for their editorials, but that’s about it. Never heard of CD though. I wonder how I can get them to troll me, haha- never been trolled before, thankfully (or sadly, depending on how you look at it).

  12. […] against the gundam pilot Not content to war with fansubbers, moe-haters, and ANN, the proprietor of Anime Almanac has turned his sights on another source of […]


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